TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senators Steve Sweeney and Wayne R. Bryant which would allow county special services and vocational school districts to share resources received unanimous final legislative approval today from the full Assembly.
“It’s a well known fact that New Jersey’s high property taxes pose a significant financial burden on many residents throughout the state,” said Senator Sweeney, D-Gloucester, Cumberland and Salem. “By allowing districts to consolidate services, we would be helping to save taxpayer dollars, while still working to ensure that schools receive the services they need to successfully educate our children – it’s a win-win situation.”
“By investing in the education of your youth we are also investing in the future of tomorrow’s workforce – we want to ensure that they have every chance to succeed and thrive,” said Senator Bryant, D-Camden and Gloucester. “The goal of this legislation is to provide an exceptional education for all students, while working to ensure that we aren’t straining the pockets of taxpayers in the process.”
The Senators’ measure, S-460, calls for the creation of a combined school board, which would consist of the county superintendent of schools and six other members, appointed by either the chief elected officer or the director of the local board of chosen freeholders. The chairman or representative of a mental health board would also serve as a non-voting member of the school board.
The schools would share a board of education and resources including equipment and transportation and buildings and share ground services, but each district would maintain its individual identity, the Senators said.
This measure now heads to the Governor’s desk where his signature will make it state law.